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Medical Education
Center for Faculty Educators

Mentoring Across Differences

The annual winter site-based meetings for the Academy of Medical Educators have become a popular venue for Academy members to connect with colleagues in smaller settings at various UCSF campus locations. The meetings provide an opportunity to share issues and experiences that can be difficult in a larger group.

This year, the AME took some time to reflect on the value of mentorship in educational settings and apply their mentorship experience to the areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Led by Academy facilitators Cathy Lomen-Hoerth, MD, PhD; Denise Connor, MD; Anna Chang, MD; Mitch Feldman, MD, MPhil; and Michelle Guy, MD; Academy groups used faculty and student scenarios around diversity and potential Title IX issues to role-play and reflect on how to best mentor across differences.

Using Mitch Feldman’s research and presentation on mentorship as a guide, the groups affirmed some key points from their own discussions to highlight successful and less successful mentorship experiences in education. Collectively the AME members discussed ways to incorporate best practices in such mentoring.

Mentoring across differences might be challenging, but taking time in your work environment to reflect how you would handle the below scenarios or even discussing these scenarios with colleagues is an important step to improving awareness on mentoring and diversity.

Think about how your mentoring experience good or bad would guide these discussions:

There are many different components to creating a positive mentorship experience. Whether you are continuing a journey of receiving mentoring from colleagues or embarking on one of mentoring others, there is no question that mentorship is associated with higher job work satisfaction, well-being, and “greater academic self-efficacy.”1

For further resources:


  1. Mitchell D. Feldman, Patricia A. Arean, Sally J. Marshall, Mark Lovett & Patricia O'Sullivan (2010) Does mentoring matter: results from a survey of faculty mentees at a large health sciences university, Medical Education Online, 15:1, DOI: 10.3402/meo.v15i0.5063